Dictionary of Welsh Biography

A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

HODGES , JOHN ( 1700? - 1777 ), cleric .

An entry in Cardiff MS. 4877 states that John Hodges , later rector of Wenvoe, Glam. , was b. in 1700 . However, the following entry in Alumni Oxon. probably relates to him: ‘ Hodges , John s. Thomas, of Abbey , co. Monmouth , pleb. Jesus Coll. , matric. 6 April 1720 , aged 18; B.A. 1723 , M.A. 1726 .’ If this identification is correct, his date of birth must be placed in 1701 or 1702 . He was ordained deacon on 20 Nov. 1724 , by the bishop of Oxford , and priest on 11 July 1825 , by the bishop of Bristol ; on 1 July 1725 , Sir Edmond Thomas , Bt. , presented him to the rectory of Wenvoe , to which he was admitted on 16 July following. From at least 1740 on, Hodges also held the donative of S. Andrews Minor . The Methodist Revival evoked a sympathetic response in Hodges , who invited both the brothers Wesley in turn to preach in Wenvoe church , Charles in 1740 and John in July 1745 . Hodges was present at the first three Methodist conferences held respectively in London in June 1744 , at Bristol in Aug. 1745 , and again at Bristol in May 1746 . When the countess of Huntingdon entertained the members of the first Methodist conference at her London house, and John Wesley preached the sermon, Hodges assisted with the service. As a result of his increasing devotion to mysticism, Hodges ’ enthusiasm for the Wesleys gradually waned. In 1758 he criticized John Wesley for the tartness of some of his controversial writings; Wesley published his letter in the Arminian Magazine . When John Wesley again preached in Wenvoe church on 28 Aug. 1763 , he found that Hodges 's fervour had entirely disappeared. Hodges d. at the age of 77 years (according to Cardiff MS. 4877 ) and was buried at Wenvoe on 5 April 1777 . He is sometimes confused with John Hodges , incumbent of Clifton , who was also a friend of the Wesleys and is mentioned in their Journals.


  • The journal of the Rev. John Wesley, enlarged from original mss., with notes from unpublished diaries, annotations, maps, and illustrations (1938) (ed. Curnock ) (indexed);
  • L. Tyerman , The life and times of the Rev. Samuel Wesley, M.A. rector of Epworth and father of the Revs. John and Charles Wesley, the founders of the Methodists (London, 1866, 1890) , i, 442;
  • Proceedings of the Wesley Historical Society , ii, 69-71;
  • Foster , Alumni Oxonienses ;
  • The Records of the Church in Wales at the National Library of Wales (N.L.W.);
  • Cardiff Manuscript 4877.


Hywel David Emanuel, M.A., (1921-70), Aberystwyth

Published date: 1959